For the first time ever, statistics suggest the possibility that whiskey will eventually outsell vodka in America. Sales of whiskey by volume grew 6 percent in 2013, while vodka sales by volume declined 1 percent (with volume sales of the world's best-selling spirits brand of any kind, Smirnoff vodka, declining 7 percent in the last half of 2013 alone). Because whiskey in general is more expensive than vodka, whiskey already outsells vodka in terms of revenue ($7 billion vs. $5.6 billion in the 2013 U.S. market), but so far vodka is still way ahead in volume sales — moving 65.9 million nine-liter (12-bottle) cases in 2013, vs. whiskey's 52.8 million.
But, says Mikael Mossberg, CEO and co-founder of Distiller, the world’s only online whiskey companion and recommendation engine, "The popularity of whiskey has grown tremendously to the point where it is on track to outsell vodka in America for the first time in almost a decade." He adds that, “However, navigating the massive amounts of options, regions, styles, and flavor profiles can be a daunting task for a beginner or even well-rounded whiskey connoisseur."
Now, in an exclusive report, Distiller has compiled statistics about America’s favorite and most popular whiskey brands. And no, Johnnie Walker and Jack Daniel's did not make the list. According to Distiller’s statistics, derived from hundreds of thousands of Distiller users and whiskey enthusiasts, the highest-rated whiskey of all time is the Pappy Van Winkle 20 Year, with an average rating of 4.76. This is no surprise, considering Pappy Van Winkle is known as the “godfather of whiskey.”
In other categories, the whiskey that was most added to whiskey lovers’ personal collections was the Lagavulin 16, a single malt Scotch whisky, and it was also voted the most popular Scottish whisky overall. The most popular American whiskey in Distiller users’ collections was Maker’s Mark, and the most popular Irish whiskey was the ever-popular Jameson.
Here is the full list of top 10 rated whiskies on Distiller:
Pappy Van Winkle 20 Year
Midleton Very Rare
George T. Stagg Bourbon (Fall 2013)
Pappy Van Winkle Family Reserve 15 Year
Four Roses 125th Anniversary Bourbon
Pappy Van Winkle 23 Year
The Macallan 25 Year
William Larue Weller Bourbon (Fall 2013)
The Balvenie Portwood 21 Year
The Macallan 18 Year